Campaign India met with Harneet Singh Rajpal, marketing vice president, Dominos Pizza India to discuss about the past, present and future paths of journey of Dominos India.
What is the size of the Indian pizza market and what is the share of Dominos India in it?
The pizza market in India was worth around 1250-1300 Crores last FY and growing at a CAGR of 26% for the last 5 years. Domino’s has over 54% market share.
It was in mid 90s that the "Americanisation" of the Indian eating habits took a shift to adopt the “pizza revolution” in India. Can you briefly tell how Dominos approached the market in its initial stages?
When we launched our first store in GK1, New Delhi, back in 1996, Pizza’s were a novel concept and only few customers indulged in pizzas in either 5 star hotels, other high end Italian restaurants and few mom and pop kind of stores. The task at hand was to educate consumers, build awareness and induce trial into the category. For the first two years, we carefully analysed the Indian market before we came up with our first advertising campaign to boost our brand presence. But it was in 2004 that we came up with a campaign - 30 minutes, nahi toh free - that claimed to give pizzas delivered in less than 30 minutes, or else, it was free. This changed the pizza war from just freshness to timeliness turf as well.
The success of the campaign is pretty well-known. How did you come up with the idea?
It evolved after we systematically and scientifically mapped the whole process. We found that it took around 15-17 minutes to make, pack and make an order ready for delivery. 7-8 minutes for drive time to deliver pizzas. We still kept around 7-8 minutes extra keeping in view the possibility unpredictable traffic issues in the city. Delivering pizzas in 30 minutes was a claim that several thought would be nothing but a publicity stunt. In fact, the delivery orders per day touched a new high after this. Putting a deadline of 30 minutes ensured an unsaid commitment that the pizza would be delivered fresh and hot.
While Television has always been the preferred medium of advertising, social network has also become an important medium for brands to have a presence. What have been your initiatives at this front?
We recently released a new campaign for our brand that committed ‘Khushiyon ki home delivery’. The campaign traced the path of the whole process, right from baking to delivering of the pizza. It retold consumers about our commitment of being a delivery-focused brand.
While television has been one of the most favoured mediums of advertising for Dominos as well, social network campaigns too have worked remarkably well for us. Our Khushiyon ka fest campaign on Facebook connected with the youth, taking the total number of fans to around 8.44 lakh. We have a presence on Facebook not to push a sales-pitch to our customers. We try to shape and also understand the personality of the fans, whom we usually refer to as the ‘Dominicons’. The sheer simplicity of the campaign and the joy of sharing have made Dominos India, the 27th most active page in India.
Opening new stores is another way you proliferate your market. What are your plans this year?
With around 411 stores in 96 cities (as of 30th September,2011), Dominos plans to open around 80 new outlets this financial year. We are an aggressive brand and adding more stores will help us penetrate the Tier-II and Tier III markets better. In the last four years we gave had a CAGR of 48% and in 2011 we grew at the rate of 61% on system level. This year we plan to launch more new products, stores and aim for a sustainable growth. This will be supported by more such main stream and social network campaigns.
Recently, reports were rife that Mukesh Ambani’s RIL is planning to enter the food chain business. Do you feel threatened?
Not at all. I am rather happy that see big players taking interest. The total organised food service market in India is pegged to be worth 8000-crore, which is only 4-5% of the total Food service market in India.. Of this, the quick service market (QSR) is only one-third, that is around 2600-crore. With big players like Reliance coming into picture, it is evident that the QSR and hence the overall organised Food service market would grow further and faster.